Big law firm billing pressures are spotlighted in an exodus by a former Cook County sheriff’s son and nine other lawyers.

Steven Elrod, who built a municipal government practice at Holland & Knight after the law firm opened a Chicago once in 2000, is leaving to start a firm with the 10-lawyer group,  showcasing billing pressures at large law firms.

The practice has represented mostly North Shore communities in thorny development issues, including Northbrook’s annexation in the late 1980s of 770 acres known as Techny and Lincolnwood’s dealings with the notorious Purple Hotel. More recently, Elrod defended Highland Park’s ban on assault rifes against the Illinois State Rifle Association.